The New York Daily News reports, the show, hosted by the Rev. Al Sharpton, will only air once a week as it moves from its current time of 6 p.m. weeknights to 8 a.m. Sundays. While the move could be seen as a demotion of sorts to some, Sharpton has taken a positive stance regarding the situation.
“I’m very happy,” he said Wednesday (Aug. 26). “First, I can reach a wider audience of people who don’t get home by 6 at night. Second, I can now get the A-list guests and newsmakers I want. And third, a Sunday morning host is what I always wanted to be.
“I never wanted to be a weeknight pundit,” Sharpton continued. “I wanted to be a Sunday morning newsmaker. I wanted to be Dr. Martin Luther King, not Larry King.”
Sharpton’s last “PoliticsNation” weeknight show will air Sept. 4. The show’s first Sunday episode will be Oct. 4.
Although Sharpton will pretape some of the “PoliticsNation” shows, he admits that others will be live as he continues to preach in church on Sunday mornings. With an 8 a.m. timeslot, the activist, who will now be freed up to travel, mentioned that it gives his show a leg up on competitors like NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“The other hosts will be forced to talk about the news I’m making,” he told the Daily News. “I will be setting the agenda.”
Despite a lower audience on Sunday morning, Sharpton notes that the day is a good one in that shows are able to attract the folks who make the decisions and power moves in the political arena.
“Everybody that deals with policy watches the Sunday morning shows,” he stated. “I believe I can help set the policy tone.”
The move of “PoliticsNation” to Sunday’s comes amid a change happening at MSNBC as it combats stagnant ratings with retooling its daytime lineup and eliminating opinion shows after its “Morning Joe” telecast on weekdays.
An MSNBC spokesman revealed that a new show will be announced in the coming weeks to take Sharpton’s 6 p.m. slot. The network’s evening line up of Chris Matthews at 7 p.m., Chris Hayes at 8 p.m., Rachel Maddow at 9 p.m. and Lawrence O’Donnell at 10 p.m. will remain unchanged. The 5 p.m. slot will be occupied with a politics show hosted by Chuck Todd.